karen's chicken diary

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Cheshire Chick
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by Cheshire Chick »

So sorry to hear about Mango Karen. Always such a sad time, but what a happy life she has had with you. Loved the photo's and glad the newbies are settling in well. Scary news on the badger front, but it sounds as if you have done a good job in securing everything. Fingers crossed they will leave the area now and it will be one less worry for you. Again, sad to hear of your loss.
bikesandbirdsbob
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by bikesandbirdsbob »

Hi sad to hear the news , try and get a visit your way during the summer .
Keep safe and you know you do your best . I am a witness to the spoiling of your flock.
Bob
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KarenE
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by KarenE »

That's true Bob, you are first hand witness to the shocking diva-ness of my girls :-D

Actually, once it's safer I am really happy to host another henpal meet up at mine again, if anyone fancies another meet up with Dory and Pokey (and Smudge and Coco of course). Not sure about eating at the pub - it's open for drinks only & in the car park - but if the weather's nice we could have a highly entertaining barby at ours (you'l go home hungry, the girls will have it straight out of your hands!)

The week's tylan seems to be doing the trick, the amount of head shaking and huffy breathing seems to be dying down apart from coco who shakes her head all the time and has done from the day we got her. I hope it's nothing serious. She does have a rather large comb but it's not in her eyes like Dory's is. It's a bit of a heavy week for the girls, as they are also on flub due to wriggly Smudge poos, and also top up doses of harkermectin to break the lice egg cycle (I'm treating them once a week for 3 weeks). To counteract all this, yesterday they enjoyed some greek yoghurt which of course isnt live culture but it was all I had in the fridge! We did all like it! Coco still has some in her head feathers.

Smudge and Coco are settling in nicely and are really coming out of their shells. Smudge is constantly sqwarking, Coco is very inquisitive and shy but absolutely determined when it comes to food! They look so alike, we have taken to calling them 'The Twins' . They still get some chases and pecks from P&D especially when it comes to food, but they are all happily coexisting (most of the time!)
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Mango, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly and Willow
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
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KarenE
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by KarenE »

It's all going on over here. Firstly the red mite are back, quite inevitably really. I spotted a few on the bottom of the cardboard boxes I use as nesting boxes while I was doing a big clean, so they have been burned and everywhere cleared out - I was due to do a treatment anyway, so everywhere has been smited, dettol power-and-pured and de'd. I'm thinking of getting some predator mites, see how they do (I'll have to remove all the DE though)

And then this week, Dory has decided to go broody. She's thought about it over the years but has been easily disuaded, but this year she seems more committed and is sitting on any eggs she can find, which due to the red mite situation is on the stone floor. No nestboxes or straw allowed! I've relented today and popped a new box and some straw in... quite sure I'll regret that. Anyway, I am having to drag her out every day and confiscate the eggs. She hasn't laid herself for a week or so now, which is odd - do they stop laying when they go broody? She is making odd sounds all day and has now taken to going to bed really early, which is quite unlike her. I wonder if she is depressed because she can't brood - I am hoping she is not sickening for something. She hasn't been eating or drinking unless I drag her out, and her crop is quite empty (I've been feeding her corn, it's all she'll eat). The funny thing is when she goes in, she goes to bed on her perch and not brooding in the box.

Coco and Smudge, aka The Twins, are doing fine. Coco bless her is still chased away by D & P, she is definitely bottom hen although I'm not sure she & Smudgie rank. Smudge spends most of her time complaining at the top of her voice, she sounds like she is permanently annoyed at something! And her eyes' shape make her look like she's always frowning! She is remarkably polite when eating out of my hand though, unlike Coco who in true bottom hen style grabs, scoffs and runs. We love the Twins to bits!
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Mango, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly and Willow
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
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Mo
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by Mo »

In the wild (before we attempted to breed a non-broody hen) they, like other birds, would lay a clutch of eggs, then start brooding them all. So the chicks would all hatch together, rather than each a day apart.

Good luck at breaking her broodiness if you decide to try to do that,
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Sunny Clucker enjoyed Folk music and song in mid-Cheshire
Cheshire Chick
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by Cheshire Chick »

Lovely to hear that The Twins have settled in well Karen. They do sound lovely little characters. Aren't they all so different with their individual personalities? Hope you get the red mite situation under control - there's always something going on with this chicken keeping lark. I don't really know anything about broodiness as I have never experienced it with any of my girls. I suppose she will stop when she is good and ready in her own time. Glad everyone is OK at your end.
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sandy
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by sandy »

Karen Dory wont lay while she is broody, a broody Woo, double trouble
The Pink Ladies..Audrey,Blossom,Merle-Oberon & Lauren-Bacall ,Cyd-Charisse,Ingrid-Bergman,Georgia,Madeleline,Myfawny & Monica-Rose
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KarenE
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by KarenE »

You're not kidding Sandy! I've now locked Dory out of the coop, as she seems a very determined broody Woo so far. She is quite distressed, although is being so in a dustbath in the run (!) so - y'know... And she is a stroppy mare as well, chasing everyone away but I guess she must be starving as well as she only comes out of the coop when I fetch her and pretty much goes straight back in again. Well, not today as i have closed the pop hole so we'll see what today brings.

Some poor hen has had to lay in the run because the nestbox is covered in Dory and she has probably been snarling them out of the coop - although maybe not as she was sitting on a Twin egg this morning, (Pokey's yesterday) so possily she's just chasing Coco out. Yesterday there was a broken egg in the run too (and a mystery substance in Coco's feathers) so I suspect it's been trampled and eaten.

I've never had a broody before, so this is quite an education! Poor Pokey is looking a little lost, I suspect she is missing her partner in crime knocking around the garden with her
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Mango, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly and Willow
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
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kitla
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by kitla »

Some folk on a chicken group are talking about spraying a mix of oil & detergent in the crevices on their coops for redmite, it smothers them - a bit like vaseline I spose. They reckon it works but bet its messy! I've always pressure sprayed with poultry shield in a garden pump spray. Praps if you have a few stubbon stragglers you could try a smoke bomb? As for broodies, I used to put Misspiggy in the coop at night & she'd perch then rush back to her nest in the morning. I used lidded travel/litter boxes as nestboxes, so there was a spare if a broody girl was hogging one. I could lend you Eggbert if you wanted to try making a spare nestbox.
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KarenE
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by KarenE »

Egbert! I was thinking about Egbert the other day! I'm not sure I want to encourage her though. How long did MissPiggy sit on Egbert before she gave up?

She bokked around the garden semi happily when I locked her out, and I did the same again yesterday for a couple of hours but she's still broody.

I've heard of people recommending all sorts for red mite - baby shampoo and oil as well. I would have thought that would gum up the sprayer. A few years back people swore by full fat coke but I haven't seen that recommended for years now. Looks like the predator mites have mixed success. I use Smite in a pressure sprayer, its dead easy & quick to spray around, after I've swept all the rubbish on the floor up. Silly Dory sneaked into the coop while I was spraying everywhere yesterday and stubbornly sat on her perch, which made spraying it interesting! Honestly, i am starting to wonder whether she just likes being carried around everywhere. Anyway, everywhere is sprayed, I dettol the perches (power & pure, supposed to be good against red mite for some reason) and I puff de all around the floor, into crevices and spread it on the perches too. I'm not sure about DE but it's worth a shot. I aim to do it every 3 days or so. I think I'll take the perches out today and gove them an extra spray today.

It's really windy here!
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Mango, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly and Willow
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
bikesandbirdsbob
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by bikesandbirdsbob »

They can be sitting on nests for ages .
As long as they eat and drink and are comfortable let her crack on .
I have tried to let my flock behave natural as possible and brodies are about as natural as can get .
Let us now when she breaks .
Bob
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kitla
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by kitla »

Misspiggy just sat for the usual few weeks. However Bonny once sat for several months, but then she is a bit of a strange old thing.
"He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals."
--Immanuel Kant
bikesandbirdsbob
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by bikesandbirdsbob »

Hi , Kitla ,well may not be so unusual , my blue bell hen is still sitting on her nest yesterday .
I thought 21 days was a normal for eggs to hatch , plus till they start walking around I suppose .
As long as she does get off to eat and drink (which she has done ) I leave her to it. She spreads her legs and does not want to come off it when I pick her up , squawking like I was going to eat her .
Lots of the flock moulting . Presume the best time , getting ready for the winter .
Bob
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KarenE
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by KarenE »

For the 4th day running Dory has been out in the run and has not gone back into the coop so I think FINGERS CROSSED AND TOUCH WOOD that she isn't broody any more! )c( >fi<

It's so nice to see her pottering about and causing mayhem with the others, and she's stopped making that funny noise and fluffed up head shaking that was basically having a go at me for taking her off the nest. Mind you, nobody is laying in the coop anyway so maybe the daft thing hasn't discovered that the new nest of choice is her fern (Dory's fern nest, as she started it first, along with Sage's nest on the patio are prime real estate) - yesterday both Smudge and Coco were squished on top of each other in there. I've popped some more straw in there for them as it was looking a bit threadbare and soggy.

The weather has been awful lately, soaking wet most of the time so I am waiting for the next reasonably dry day to do my next smiteing of the coop. Got to keep on top of the red blighters.Might have to do it today, but I do worry about damp if it doesn't dry off properly - I do give it a good soaking, and finish off the perches with dettol power & pure
Karen
Alpha chick to: Dorian Grey, Pokey, Mango, Smudge and Coco
Chief servant to Marley the cat
Remembering Weeps, Rexie, Sage, Cassie, Toffee, Captain Gabby, Commander Nugget, Ronnie, Juno, Special Poetry and Reading Casper, Tigger, Tophenanall Rembrandt, Chestnut, Tiddly and Willow
Also my lost furries Charlie and Jasper
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sandy
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Re: karen's chicken diary

Post by sandy »

Karen you are very lucky Dory was only broody for such a short time, Lottie and Dottie used to make a career out of it {rofwl}
Red mite, I remember Manda saying on her ages ago cover the inside of the coop with full sugared coke, not the brand one any old coke
The Pink Ladies..Audrey,Blossom,Merle-Oberon & Lauren-Bacall ,Cyd-Charisse,Ingrid-Bergman,Georgia,Madeleline,Myfawny & Monica-Rose
The Peds…Suranne,Miriam,Jennifer,Nancy,
Vorky Blueped,Ginger,Ninger &Linky

Sunny Clucker was ere July 12-21 2012
Sunny Clucker was ere July 6 2016 to Sept 9th 2017
Sunny Clucker is here , rehomed Aug 18th 2018/
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